Magsaysay Award Winner Dr. Sandeep Pandey’s open
letter to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath
Lucknow, 26 December 2019. Magsaysay Award winner Dr.
Sandeep Pandey has written an open letter to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi
Adityanath on the police atrocities in the anti-CAA movement, that a crowd of
millions gathered in other big cities of the country and somewhere There was no
violence, but why did it happen in Uttar Pradesh itself? He has also questioned
the arrest of social workers and human rights activists.
Following is the message of Dr. Sandeep Pandey’s open letter
to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath –
OPEN LETTER TO CHIEF MINISTER YOGI ADITYANATH
Date: 26 December, 2019
Respected Chief Minister,
sought your appointment on 21 December, 2019. However, as I didn’t get a response,
I thought of writing my thoughts to you through this open letter. I want to
make some comments on the approach of government-administration on protests
against Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens held in
Lucknow and Uttar Pradesh. A pertinent question which needs to be asked is when
lakhs of people assembled at other places in the country without any untoward
incident why did violence break out in UP?
The vengeance with which UP government-administration is acting in
response to the violence by anarchist elements which took place during protests
is condemnable as more maturity and retraint is expected of any
It is the
anarchist elements which are responsible for violence but action is being taken
against people who, all along their lives, have adopted peaceful means of
protests and have faith in the Constitution of the country. My friends Advocate
Mohammad Shoaib and retired Indian Police Services officer S.R. Darapuri have
been arrested, who like me were under house arrest in Lucknow on 19/12/19, the
day on which maximum violence took place. Mohammad Shoaib was Secretary of City
unit of Socialist Party when he was a student of LLB at Lucknow University in
1972 and at present is the State President of Socialist Party (India). He has
been successful in getting 14 innocent youth, who were falsely implicated in
terrorism related cases, acquitted from the Court after contesting their cases.
He was attacked inside Court by advocates who didn’t want him to take up cases
of the abovementioned youth but has not used violence against anybody in his
life. S.R. Darapuri is a human rights and Ambedkarite activist and has
contested Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha elections from UP. In 2008, he and I were
part of a fact-finding team which had produced a report declaring Shahbaz from
Lucknow innocent when he was picked up by Rajasthan police in the Jaipur bomb
blast case, in which Shahbaz was recently acquitted by the Court too. Robin
Verma, a University teacher and a volunteer of Rihai Manch, of which Mohammad
Shoaib is the President, has been beaten up badly by police before being sent
to jail. Congress Party spokesperson Sadaf Jafar was till the last moment
before her arrest trying to pacify the youth who were indulging in violence of
which there is proof. Similarly, Deepak Mishra is a creative cultural activist
and Dr. Pawan Rao Ambedkar is a lecturer at Rae Bareli. In Varanasi among the
activists and students who have been arrested I personally know Anoop Shramik,
Dhananjay Tripathi, Diwakar Singh, Ram Janam, Shivraj Yadav, Ekta, Ravi Kumar,
Sanya Khan, Sriprakash Rai, Prashant Rai, Satish Singh, Raj Abhishek, Deepak
Rajguru, Manish Kumar, Sanjeev Singh, Arpit Giri, Narendra Mani Tripathi, Gaurav
Mani Tripathi, Shahid Jamal and Chedilal Nirala about whom I can say with
confidence that they can only be involved in peaceful protests. I’ve myself
demonstrated peacefully against CAA-NRC outside Banaras Hindu University main
gate on 14 December and outside my house under detention on 19 December.
send social activists, who have faith in the Constitution, to jail because your
police in unable to identify the anarchist elements then the space for peaceful
means of expressing dissent with the government in a democracy will be
eliminated and anarchist elements will be easily able to mislead the common
people. Social activists have a useful role of providing creative options to
people of expressing their opposition to the government on any issue. It is
certain that if social activists will be able to influence the protests, they
will remain peaceful and, in their absence, there is danger of these protests
it to your wisdom. If you think it proper please reconsider your decision and
withdraw the cases against abovementioned activists and release all innocent
additional comment. After the nationwide protests against CAA-NRC now the
Bhartiya Janata Party leaders are asking the Muslim citizens of country not to
worry. But in the FIRs registered in response to violence during protests most
of the names of accused are Muslims. For example, in FIR No. 600/2019
registered at Police Station, Hazratganj, Lucknow out of 39 accused, 36 names
are those of Muslims whereas non-Muslims participated in the protests in large
numbers and out of 16 youth killed in UP due to bullet injuries all are
Muslims. If there will be a bias against Muslims in taking action then how can
they be expected to have confidence in the government-administration?
you’ll deliberate over my letter.
Vice-President, Socialist Party (India)
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